China- Pakistan Economic Corridor Joint Cooperation Committee’s third meeting held

Beijing, August 27, 2014 (PPI-OT): The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Joint Cooperation Committee’s third meeting was held here today. The meeting was co-chaired by Mr. Hu Zucai, Vice Chairman National Development and Reform Commission of China and Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reform of Pakistan Prof. Ahsan Iqbal. It was also attended by the Chief Minister of Punjab Mr. Shahbaz Sharif and Chief Minister Baluchistan Dr. Abdul Malik along with senior offcials experts on energy, transport and infrastructure from both sides.

The Federal Minister of Planning, Development and Reform Prof. Ahsan Iqbal said that the Government of Pakistan had made CPEC a hallmark within its development agenda and the projects carried great transformational impact on the lives of millions of people. He said that CPEC would be a game changer not only for Pakistan and China but for the entire region. Prof. Ahsan said that consensus had been achieved on many projects that would help Pakistan meet its increasing energy demands.

He said that according to the energy projects agreed 9000 megawatts of electricity would be made available by 2017-18 in the short term that would fulfil energy needs and even lay the foundation of meeting the future needs of energy.

He said that today’s meeting focused on the short term projects to be completed by 2017. The meeting shared the vision for development of CPEC as well as the Vision 2025 in relation to CPEC. On 11th of August this year, the vision 2025 of Pakistan that lays down further the road map for further development of economy was unveiled. Under the corridor, the long term projects would be completed by 2030, the medium term projects by 2025 and the short term projects by 2017-18.

Ahsan Iqbal said that CPEC had assumed paramount importance and significance. In July 2013 Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif undertook visit of China and signed MoU on CPEC. Following the visit, the energy and transport groups visited Pakistan and saw physically the needs and prospects of projects to come to an agreement to draw a mutually shared agenda for CPEC. Today as we meet, he said, a consensus has been achieved on various projects of energy, transport and infrastructure development of the CPEC.

He said the Government of Pakistan had made significant progress for doing its part. For example, the Karachi- Lahore motorway, and Gawadar port related projects have completed necessary formalities to put the projects on ground.

He said that in the transport sector, with the cooperation of China, the Karachi -Lahore motorway, the Multan-Sukkar section would be constructed and the other sections would be built on BOT basis. At Gawadar, a modern airport will be built, hospital and training facility, industrial parks would be set up. The Karakoram Highway (KKH) will also be upgraded and modernized.

During the meeting, the long-term planning of CPEC was also deliberated upon. Prof. Ahsan Iqbal also highlighted the trade, investment and tourism potential along the corridor as important areas for activating the corridor.

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